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Wetpixel D800 review

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John-yes you are good.

 

Adam

 

 

Maybe we should point out for non-English speakers that that was IRONIC humour!

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I agree with the concept that the ideal housing is in the eye of the beholder. I am much more interested in the handle-ability of a housing than I am more than the basic controls.

 

Basically, as an amature, how long can i sit taking a series of a simple subject before either my dive buddy or the divemaster gets irritated?

 

More than a few of my friends want small size and minimum weight more than any special controls or anything else for that matter.

 

Given the above how can John, who is perfect but a bit too modest, really get into the head of a keen amature (me), or someone just moving up to to a dslr.

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QUOTE (adamhanlon @ May 18 2012, 01:32 PM John-yes you are good. Adam

 

QUOTE (John's reply @ today 03:29 PM) Maybe we should point out for non-English speakers that that was IRONIC humour!

 

Dear John, I certainly hope that Adam's comment was ironic humour. Though I'd think that you would really prefer that the comment, "yes - you are good" had been made by a girlfriend and not a male.

 

You should be should also be aware that Adam considers the use of capital letters in a post to be rude, belligerent and hectoring.

 

I agree with Adam'a earlier comment that we should get this tread back to the topic of the D800. And using it underwater. And things related to that, like housings for the D800.

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Nige Wade asked Adam this about the D800. "I'm really interested to know how the camera performs in 1.5 crop mode with a Tokina 10-17 or how the images taken in FX with the 10-17 and cropped post production come out. Have you plans to include this in the camera test? (if not would a pretty please work?)

 

I would suggest that Nige consider a different possibility. Shot the D800 in the FX mode with a true fixed focal length fisheye like the Sigma 15mm f2.8. And then crop the 36 Mp image to reduce the angle of coverage. To start, the fixed single focal length Sigma lens is probably sharper than the Tokina lens, which is a zoom. Using the Sigma lens with the full 36 Mp FX format the at the 180 degree coverage he should get a considerably sharper image that shooting the Tokina at its widest 180 degrees setting using the 15.3 Mp DX crop. The Tokina lens has a zoom range from 180 degrees to 100 degrees. A DX crop of the Sigma 15mm is about probably about equal to zooming the Tokina inward to a coverage of about 120 degrees. Again, I would expect the Sigma image to be sharper. It is fixed focal length and you are using only the center of its coverage when shooting DX. And for the same reason, I would expect that intermediate crops, between FX and DX to favor the Sigma lens. So the only thing the Tokina really offers vs the Sigma lens is that range from 120 degrees to 100 degrees. And maybe, even when cropped to 12 Mp, the Sigma lens would give you a sharper image vs the Tokina at 15.3 Mp.

 

The D800 also offers a 25 Mp. 1.2x crop, which is midway between the 180 degree and 120 degree coverages.

 

I would ask this question, "Has the D800 made the Tokina fisheye zoom much less appealing. And maybe obsolete."

 

A FX version of the Tokina would be a very welcome addition for many underwater shooters including myself.

 

Fred

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FB has hit the nail on the head! FB? No, not anything to do with FaceBook! Thanks Fred, for bit of lateral thinking!

 

(...and yes, I am rude, belligerent and hectoring!)

Edited by John Bantin

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Maybe we should point out for non-English speakers that that was IRONIC humour!

 

:lol: Ironic???!!! what's that?....

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Hi all,

 

I recently bought the sigma 15 mm fisheye to replace the Tokina, because i found out that the Tokina wasn't optically good enough. I decided to take some testshots from our balcony with some 100% crops of several options. I took the same image with the Sigma in FX, The Tokina at 14 mm in FX and the Tokina at 10 mm in DX. I also downsized the images taken in FX to DX size in Photoshop. After that i made 100% crops of the same treetops in all these images which i posted below. In order to be able to upload them all in Wetpixel i had to downsize them more then i wanted but i think that differences are still obvious.

 

first the downsized image of the whole image, as it was taken with the sigma 15 mm in FX mode:

 

post-6179-1337420303.jpg

 

 

Then a 100% crop from the treetops of the FX image (downsized)

 

post-6179-1337420322.jpg

 

 

Then a 100% crop from the FX image that was reduced to DX size in Photoshop and then a 100% crop of the same treetops:

 

post-6179-1337420331.jpg

 

 

I took the same image with the Tokina in FX mode with the lens zoomed to 14-15 mm (15 mm on the scale of the lens that appeared in LR4 as 14 mm), the whole image is roughly the same, so you get a downsized 100% crop of the same treetops

 

post-6179-1337420339.jpg

 

 

Then i downsized the FX shot 14 mm to DX size in Photoshop and made a 100% crop of teh same treetops again:

 

post-6179-1337420347.jpg

 

 

And finally i took the same image with the camera in DX mode with the Tokina at 10 mm and made again a 100% crop of the same treetops. I'm not going to put the whole image since it's roughly the same as the other two whole images.

 

post-6179-1337420355.jpg

 

 

 

For all images i set the camera in 'A' mode at f/5.6 and the shuttertime was between 1/250 and 1/320. All shot were slightly underexposed at - 0.7 EV.

I think it's pretty obvious that the Tokina has it's optical shortcomings compared to the Sigma, unless i've got a bad copy of the Tokina... But as Fred stated before: i think that an FX version of the 10-17 mm Tokina (a 15- 29 mm FE?) would be highly appreciated by a lot of FX shooters.

BTW, i shot jpgs with the camera and didn't do any sharpening except during the export form lightroom, but i did that to all images.

 

cheers, Udo

Edited by Udo van Dongen

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I think that an FX version of the 10-17 mm Tokina (a 15- 29 mm FE?) would be highly appreciated by a lot of FX shooters.

It's a pity that Tokina don't make a version of the Pentax 17-28, just like the Tokina 10-17 is originally a Pentax design.

I've thought of buying one on ebay and using a Pentax to Nikon convertor

http://www.ebay.com/itm/PENTAX-SMC-P-F-FIS...7#ht_5901wt_922

Edited by loftus

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But as Fred stated before: i think that an FX version of the 10-17 mm Tokina (a 15- 29 mm FE?) would be highly appreciated by a lot of FX shooters.

 

I recently suggested such a lens to a Tokina rep. I don't think the idea was taken too seriously, but hopefully it will plant a seed in their collective brain. Maybe a few emails to Tokina requesting such a thing would help further it along. Tokina is aware of the special love for their little fisheye zoom that u/w photographers have.

 

Cheers,

Cp

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Udo, Thank you for doing the comparison shots that I suggested might show that cropped images from a full-frame fisheye like the Sigma 15mm might prove to be better than the full DX image from the Tokina fisheye zoom. I would have done them myself, but I do not own the Tokina lens. I waited for a Nikon FX camera to go digital from film. To provide a really fair comparison, I might suggest shooting the comparison shots at f8 and f11, especially with the Tokina, since the best performance of most lenses is when they are stopped down two or three apertures from wide open and the Tokina, if I remember correctly is an f3.5-f4.5 lens. The Sigma if f2.8 which would have the additional advantages of a brighter viewfinder image and more accurate auto-focusing because there is less depth-of-field at f2.8 when the auto-focusing occurs. All of these were thoughts I had when I said that I thought that the Sigma lens should provide a better final image. But your images show such a significant difference in sharpness that I doubt that stopping the Tokina down another f-stop or two would make much difference.

 

Cp, When I was at the PMA (Photo Marketing Association) show in Las Vegas three plus years ago, which was shortly after Nikon and Sony had introduced their first full-frame digital cameras, I made a point of going to the Tokina booth to suggest that since there were now three companies (Canon had introduced its full-frame camera, the 1Ds series, years earlier) selling FX chip cameras, they ought to consider introducing a version of the fisheye zoom for FX. And mentioned the Pentax 17-28. Obviously Tokina didn't take the suggestion. While the fisheye zoom has been a popular among cropped sensor underwater photographers, perhaps Tokina feels that full-frame camera sales haven't been sufficient to justify the cost of developing a similar lens for us. I'd rather Nikon (or Sigma) did it anyway, since I have more confidence in those manufacturers.

 

Fred

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If you have seen some of my posts concerning my D700 housing you would have seen that I was not happy that Seacam did NOT have a control for changing the ambient light metering pattern (from spot to matrix to centerweight). And that Paul Kay, a Seacam distributor-dealer immediately countered with the comment that HE used only spot metering with his Canon camera underwater. I also commented that I thought that a brightly colored housing can sometimes cause visually acute marine life to "back off" sooner than a darker housing and had even painted one of my older white F4 Aquatica housings camou and did tests with shrimp gobies. Again Paul rushed to Seacam silver's defense saying that it was probably seeing their reflection in the front of the port that had caused the gobies to dive.

Off topicish, but I've only just seen this but feel inclined to reply.

 

Firstly, the reason that I do not use matrix metering or its equivalent is because at the end of the day it is a form of automation. Its assessment of exposure is based on a variety of parameters and as such can be fooled and so has a degree of unpredictability built in. I prefer to use my own knowledge and experience and sort out exposure myself. This is not a counter but an explanation.

 

Secondly, I apparently rushed to Seacam's defence, but my observations were the same in the days when I used greeny-blue, film Subals. IMHO it is still not the colour but the reflections, perhaps allied to the round 'eye' like appearance of a port which causes problems.

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Hi again folks,

 

A few more images from testing today:

 

Sigma 15mm:

 

i-XqkkVGk-M.jpg

 

With a Tokina 10-17mm in DX mode:

 

i-vHQmNdz-M.jpg

 

Both unedited/uncropped as before.

 

Adam

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Sorry for the slow reply. I was away shooting and off line.

 

I also enjoy reading the WetPixel camera reviews. I was making suggestions that I thought could make them better.

Adam - perhaps the News announcement of Alex's testing of the D4 in Iceland included the picture of the camera that your link shows. But I just did a quick look of Alex's full story entitled "Nikon D4 Underwater Testing, Live updates from Iceland" as it appears in the digital Slrs/Housings forum. There is no picture of the D4 itself anywhere in that story-forum topic. But there are more than half a dozen pictures of the Nauticam housing or parts of it on the four pages of the field test. So to me, this looks like more of a D4 housing review/promotion than a camera review.

 

Just to clarify Fred's query. This was a Live Updates From The Field Thread:

http://wetpixel.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=45907

 

Rather than the Wetpixel review of the D4 (which as it happens, starts with a picture of the camera):

http://wetpixel.com/i.php/full/nikon-d4-field-review/

 

I shared images from the field - because these were the only (and I believe still are the only) underwater photos from a D4 in a D4 housing that have been shared on the internet. I shared images of the housing as this was the only housing for the D4 in the world at the time. It is more than a month later and I am not sure yet if there is another that there still has been diving. There were already thousands of photos of the D4 camera available online. There were no photos of a working underwater housing. It made sense to share what was newsworthy - D4 underwater photos and D4 housing - that made them possible.

 

For the record the Nauticam D4 is not my housing, I have yet to decide on which housing to get myself. So I have no specific bias towards them. But they deserve praise for having a housing available so early and for it being such a good housing. Other manufacturer's will have to go some to better it - which benefits us all. There is no doubt that Nauticam are putting tremendous effort into housing ergonomics and they 100% listen to their users and adopt ideas and suggestions from their user group. I'd suggest not discounting the Nauticam brand because of any perceived bias by the reviewer.

 

John-yes you are good.

 

Adam - I think you have a typo. Maybe a sticking 'o" on your keyboard! :lol:

 

--------------------

 

Regarding the FX vs DX thing - I covered many of these points in detail in the D4 review, but I know that review is super sized making them hard to find.

 

D800 in DX:

Slightly better pixel per pixel than D7000. Although slightly less pixels. Better AF than D7000.

Poorer viewfinder (using D800 viewfinder in DX mode means a much smaller view than D7000 viewfinder). This is a significant point - unless you like small viewfinders!

 

Regarding the Tok (from D4 review):

Many DX users fear they will miss the 10-17mm, but actually they don’t that much. I have both FX and DX systems and when I swap back to the 10-17mm I find I see more of its optical flaws than I used to. On full frame the choice is Nikon 16mm and Sigma 15mm. The Sigma focuses closer, the Nikon is better shooting into the light (the Sigma is a flare monster).

For the record I was shooting the Nikon more than the Sigma in Iceland.

 

I agree with Fred about the cropping in post aspect of the D800, rather than need for a 10-17mm or indeed super macro accessories (from D4 review):

I believe that the D800 offers enough resolution to be a game changer. To change the way we shoot and take photos with the intention of cropping in post.

 

I think cropping in post is more appealing that changing between FX, 1.2x and DX underwater. Which is certainly something that requires stopping shooting and navigating menus. It is much more time consuming than twirling a zoom gear. As a replacement for the 10-17mm on the D800, I think you just crop in post.

 

Alex

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Hello Alex and all the other D800 users!

 

I have a question regarding AF: I think the D7000 AF has some annoying issues:

 

In the AF-S mode we can ONLY choose 1 or 39 AUTO focus points and nothing in between (in AF-C mode we hace a lot of different options); the D300 is better in this aspect (even the D200 would allow more configurations)

 

The AF-A is a mix between AF-S and AF-C so if I have both S and C set with shutter priority: why is always AF-A locked in a focus priority mode?

 

Both of these problems could be firmware fixed...

 

How are the D800 AF modes? do they offer more options?

 

Thank you very much!

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Hello Alex and all the other D800 users!

 

I have a question regarding AF: I think the D7000 AF has some annoying issues:

 

In the AF-S mode we can ONLY choose 1 or 39 AUTO focus points and nothing in between (in AF-C mode we hace a lot of different options); the D300 is better in this aspect (even the D200 would allow more configurations)

 

The AF-A is a mix between AF-S and AF-C so if I have both S and C set with shutter priority: why is always AF-A locked in a focus priority mode?

 

Both of these problems could be firmware fixed...

 

How are the D800 AF modes? do they offer more options?

 

Thank you very much!

 

Hi David,

I'm afraid the options in the D800 in AF-S are the same, except for the fact that you have 51 points instead of 39.

 

best, udo

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Hello Alex and all the other D800 users!

 

How are the D800 AF modes? do they offer more options?

 

Thank you very much!

 

Yes there are many AF options.

You can group in single point, 9 and 21 or full 51 points in AF-C. You can shoot AF-C in focus priority too. Options reduce when add teleconverters etc so that the maximum lens aperture is greater than f/5.6.

 

I will dodge writing a lengthy reply now and suggest a quick look through the AF section of my D4 review:

http://wetpixel.com/i.php/full/nikon-d4-field-review/P4/

 

There is also a bit of 3D tracking in my D3 review:

http://wetpixel.com/i.php/full/nikon-d3-fi...ific-part-2/P3/

 

I'm sure others will have comments too. The D4 has a first frame focus release priority in continuous shooting - which looks very good for action photography (bait balls), (i.e. the shutter won't take the first frame until focus is confirmed, but will allow subsequent frames to be taken even if it cannot confirm focus). I suspect this will be on the D800 too.

 

Alex

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Hi David,

I'm afraid the options in the D800 in AF-S are the same, except for the fact that you have 51 points instead of 39.

 

best, udo

 

Argggh! Is that only me who likes using zone area AF-S mode? I don´t like AF-C because many times it "rethinks" just when fully pressing the shutter and loses AF ruining the picture, specially on lowlight macro pictures. I think it would cost zero to nikon to offer (as it did in previous cameras) these options...

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Yes there are many AF options.

You can group in single point, 9 and 21 or full 51 points in AF-C. You can shoot AF-C in focus priority too. Options reduce when add teleconverters etc so that the maximum lens aperture is greater than f/5.6.

 

I will dodge writing a lengthy reply now and suggest a quick look through the AF section of my D4 review:

http://wetpixel.com/i.php/full/nikon-d4-field-review/P4/

 

There is also a bit of 3D tracking in my D3 review:

http://wetpixel.com/i.php/full/nikon-d3-fi...ific-part-2/P3/

 

I'm sure others will have comments too. The D4 has a first frame focus release priority in continuous shooting - which looks very good for action photography (bait balls), (i.e. the shutter won't take the first frame until focus is confirmed, but will allow subsequent frames to be taken even if it cannot confirm focus). I suspect this will be on the D800 too.

 

Alex

 

That is a great review although it wasn´t clear how the AF-S mode worked. Thank you for taking your time to write such a long essay!

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Argggh! Is that only me who likes using zone area AF-S mode? I don´t like AF-C because many times it "rethinks" just when fully pressing the shutter and loses AF ruining the picture, specially on lowlight macro pictures. I think it would cost zero to nikon to offer (as it did in previous cameras) these options...

 

This is why back focus is so popular. Getting af activation off of the shutter release and on to your thumb eliminates this issue. Using Hugyfot housings I think this is only practical if you grip the housing (not the right handle) when shooting.

Edited by Ryan

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Ah well, I use focus as the shutter release priority and even then i get unfocused shots. I will try the 3d tracking on my d-300. Thanks Alex.

 

Tom

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This is why back focus is so popular. Getting af activation off of the shutter release and on to your thumb eliminates this issue. Using Hugyfot housings I think this is only practical if you grip the housing (not the right handle) when shooting.

 

 

I don´t use the right handle but I still find very inconvenient to shoot that way... I prefer to use one point only and risk it does not acquire focus... Oh well, there is not much more to say :lol:

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I don´t use the right handle but I still find very inconvenient to shoot that way... I prefer to use one point only and risk it does not acquire focus... Oh well, there is not much more to say :lol:

 

Hi David,

As Alex stated it's possible to set the AF-C in focus priority mode via the menu, which means it only releases when the focus is locked, i wasn't aware of that when i posted my previous reply. The other two options are release priority (always release when pushed) and release+focus priority, which means that it continues to focus (more slowly) when the contrast is too low or if it gets lower. On the other hand, in AF-S mode you can also set it in release mode. Anyway, i agree with you that the old switch with AF-S, AF-C an AF-M was more convenient.

 

Udo

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I bought 64gb SD and 32gb CF cards. I realised pretty quickly that my older cards weren't up to it.

 

In regards to either the SD or CF cards, did you notice the difference between say a 60 mb/s card versus a 90 mb/s when using the D800? Did a slower card cause any delay?

 

thx,

Elmer

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In regards to either the SD or CF cards, did you notice the difference between say a 60 mb/s card versus a 90 mb/s when using the D800? Did a slower card cause any delay?

 

thx,

Elmer

Hey Elmer,

I just bought the Lexar 1000x, and it definitely makes a difference as far as the cache filling up goes. With my Sandisk Extreme III the cache starts to fill at about 16 frames and slow down. With the Lexar it goes to 18 or 19 before slowing down. It is pricey though so not sure it's really worth it.

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Oh I think you'll find it's worthwhile once you get a baitball. :P

 

The SD cards are so slow they won't do much for the buffer. I'd shoot RAW to CF and jpg to SD. Or just shoot stills to CF and video to SD.

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